Honeymoon over as Djokovic works for win

Wed Aug 6, 2014 7:52pm EDT
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By Steve Keating

TORONTO (Reuters) - Gael Monfils let Novak Djokovic know his honeymoon was over and it was time to get back to work by forcing the world number one to battle for a 6-2 6-7 (4) 7-6 (2) second round win at the Rogers Cup on Wednesday.

Playing his first match as a married man, Djokovic, a three-time winner in Canada, needed two hours, 41 minutes and a third set tie-break to subdue the Frenchman and extend his perfect record over the feisty Monfils to 10-0.

"Well, it's a first and last time I hope I'm getting married, and of course it is different circumstances that I'm in," laughed Djokovic, who was married after claiming his seventh grand slam title at Wimbledon.

"But it's been many years already that I have been on the professional tour and with the same team of people around me who are experts in their fields ... and they are making sure I'm in the right frame of mind and in the right zone."

Since losing in the quarter-finals of the Australian Open, Djokovic had reached at least the semi-finals in all seven tournaments since, winning at Indian Wells, Miami, Rome and on the grass at Wimbledon where he reclaimed the top ranking.

But Monfils looked determined to end that run breaking Djokovic twice in the opening set and sweeping the last four games for a 1-0 lead.

Monfils continued to press Djokovic in the second and in two consecutive service games was within two points of ending his winless drought against the Serb.

In the third, the Frenchman again went up a break but Djokovic would immediately break back forcing the set to a tie-break which he easily won.   Continued...

Aug 6, 2014; Toronto, Ontario, Canada; Novak Djokovic (SRB) plays a backhand against Gael Monfils (FRA)  on day three of the Rogers Cup tennis tournament at Rexall Centre. Peter Llewellyn-USA TODAY Sports